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Places in Middle-earth

Nen Girith

Type: Rivers & Lakes

Region: Beleriand & North

Meaning: the Shuddering Water

Other Names
Dimrost 'the Rainy Stair'

Location: The high falls of Celebros on the slopes of Amon Obel in the Forest of Brethil; originally called Dimrost.

Description:

Map of Doriath.
Doriath and its environs, showing the Forest of Brethil.
On the next day they bore her towards Ephel Brandir; but when they came to Dimrost, the Rainy Stair, where the tumbling stream of Celebros fell towards Teiglin, a great shuddering came upon her, wherefore afterwards that place was called Nen Girith, the Shuddering Water.1

The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion, Ch 21, Of Túrin Turambar

Map of Brethil.
Brethil, showing Nen Girith on the Celebros.
In the morning they bore Níniel towards Ephel Brandir, and the road went steeply upward towards Amon Obel until it came to a place where it must cross the tumbling stream of Celebros. There a bridge of wood had been built, and below it the stream went over a lip of worn stone, and fell down by many foaming steps into a rocky bowl far below; and all the air was filled with spray like rain. There was a wide greensward at the head of the falls, and birches grew about it.... There the air was cool and there wayfarers in summer would rest and drink of the cold water.

Unfinished Tales, Part 1, Ch 2, Narn I Hîn Húrin: Nienor in Brethil

[Turambar] himself would ride to the high fall of Nen Girith... whence he himself could look far across the lands.

Unfinished Tales, Part 1, Ch 2, Narn I Hîn Húrin: The Coming of Glaurung

[Over] the bridge there was a wide view towards the ravines of Teiglin some two miles to the west.

Unfinished Tales, Part 1, Ch 2, Narn I Hîn Húrin: Nienor in Brethil

[Brandir] came at last to the bridge over Celebros... five leagues2 at the least from [Ephel Brandir].

Unfinished Tales, Part 1, Ch 2, Narn I Hîn Húrin: The Death of Glaurung


Etymology
nen  'water', used of lakes, pools, and lesser rivers, in Nen Girith, Nenning, Nenuial, Nenya; Cuiviénen, Uinen; also in many names in The Lord of the Rings, as Nen Hithoel, Bruinen, Emyn Arnen, Núrnen. Nîn 'wet' in Loeg Ningloron; also in Nindalf.

The Silmarillion, Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names

girith  'shuddering' in Nen Girith; cf. also Girithron, name of the last month of the year in Sindarin (The Lord of the Rings Appendix D).

The Silmarillion, Appendix: Elements in Quenya and Sindarin Names


Notes
1One might suppose that it was only when all was over, and Túrin and Nienor dead, that her shuddering fit was recalled and its meaning seen, and Dimrost renamed Nen Girith; but in the legend Nen Girith is used as the name throughout.

Unfinished Tales, Part 1, Ch 2, Narn I Hîn Húrin: Notes, Note 24

2A league is approximately three miles.

Unfinished Tales, Part 3, Ch 1, The Disaster of the Gladden Fields: Appendix, Númenórean Linear Measures

Contributors: Elena Tiriel 27Nov09, 25Dec11

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